Atif F Qureshi, PKKH Editorial Team |Edited by Talha Mujaddidi
When it is said to them: "Make not mischief on the Earth," they say: "Why, we only want to make peace!" Holy Qur'an (2-11)
Wherever the Americans go, their policies spread poison. Under the pretext of 'freedom and democracy' US policy-makers trample over weaker nations, placing and replacing puppet rulers on a whim and propagandising against all aspirations for true independence. (Stephen Kinzer's Overthrown is a must book to read in this context).
With total control of global media, and their weapons of mass distraction, they are able to crush resistance at the very root -- before it even forms in the mind. Just as Noam Chomsky said, "If the Nuremberg laws were applied, then every post-war American president would have been hanged".
Yet in spite of the 'fasad-fil-ardh' that America has unleashed around the world, we still see an unseemly obsession with all things American. Suffering from a mass psychosis akin to Stockholm-syndrome, even nations traumatised and brutalized by America see only America as possible salvation. Clearly, American propagandists have done their work well.
Not in Pakistan. In what can only be described as a clear and hopeful sign that this nation is awakening, recent polls have revealed that the Pakistani public categorically denounces American policies. A recently conducted poll by PakistanKaKhudaHafiz.com revealed that 89% of over 1,000 participants were of the opinion that the United States should be declared as a hostile state.
This only reinforces another scientifically conducted poll conducted by the Al-Jazeera network that found that over 70% of Pakistanis held America to be the greatest threat to the sovereignty and independence of Pakistan -- even greater than arch-rival and eternal enemy India.
So great is this a problem for the Americans that when their Generals in the region are quizzed by journalists, they are more likely to be asked about the 'battle for hearts and minds' rather than actual battles. But in spite of the feigned concern in Washington, the widespread anti-Americanism is not too great a concern for US policymakers. After all, as far as the US is concerned, only Pakistan's puppet leaders need be pro-US -- the rest of Pakistan can go to hell. But in this lies the problem for the US. As the farcical reality of Pakistan's democracy is becoming increasingly clear to the public at large, they are turning their ire not just on their puppet leaders, but on their foreign puppet-masters. And this does not bode well for US's future plans for the region.
This anti-US mood in Pakistan is nothing new. It is a mode of thought that is familiar to most Pakistanis -- and with good reason. US-Pak relations have always been fractious -- not based on mutual trust and respect but on mutual suspicion and necessity. Every Pakistani, from street sweeper to industrialist, knows of the infamous incident in the early 1990's when the US failed to deliver to Pakistan dozens of F16 fighter jets that Pakistan had already paid for -- and not content with humiliating a proud nation enough, in a final salvo, they instead delivered of all things -- wheat. The Pakistani public were not impressed to say the least.
But that is old hat. More recently, America has committed a litany of errors that can only lead an objective person to conclude that not only does the US not have Pakistan's interest to heart, but they are only interested in marginalizing and destabilizing Pakistan through any means possible. The Pakistani people are not blind. They see the chicanery clearly:
- The 'surge' in American troops in Afghanistan accompanied a 'surge' in terrorism in Pakistan. While the Afghan Taliban never threatened Pakistani sovereignty, since 2001 thousands of innocents have been killed in a wave of suicide bombings in Pakistan that 'coincidently', only began after the US invasion and occupation of Afghanistan in 2001.
- The deliberate spread of the Afghan occupation into Pakistan and the treatment of both nations as a single theatre or 'battlefield' called AfPak. The notion that both nations are to be treated the same even though one is war-torn and primitive while the other has a sophisticated civic society is laughable, but the idea that American forces can strike into Pakistan with impunity is enough to make the average Pakistani's blood boil.
- Wave after wave of callous and imprecise drone attacks. These achieve practically nothing while only murdering innocent civilians and riling up the Pakistani public who despair at their feckless government for being complicit in continual violations of the nations sovereignty and dignity.
- Since 2001 the US has turned a blind eye towards Indian Intelligence operations from inside Afghanistan designed to destabilize Pakistan. According to a report published in September 2008 by Brig (R) Asif Haroon Raja, India has 14 consulates in Afghanistan from which RAW is operating. In Wakhan, Badakshan province, RAW is operating a madrassah, where clerics from India are brainwashing local Afghans, Uzbeks and Tajiks. Their students are then infiltrated into Pakistan where they readily carry out suicide missions and other operations.This blatant infiltration into Afghanistan by the Indian intelligence apparatus has provided safe haven from which Indian agents attack and destabilize Pakistan's tribal areas and NWFP.In another recent report from Foreign Affairs magazine, by Christine Fair of RAND Corporation gives us the inside: "Having visited the Indian mission in Zahedan, Iran, I can assure you they are not issuing visas as the main activity! Moreover, India has run operations from its mission in Mazar, Afghanistan (through which it supported the Northern Alliance) and is likely doing so from the other consulates it has reopened in Jalalabad and Qandahar along the border. Indian officials have told me privately that they are pumping money into Baluchistan. Kabul has encouraged India to engage in provocative activities such as using the Border Roads Organization to build sensitive parts of the Ring Road and use the Indo-Tibetan police force for security. It is also building schools on a sensitive part of the border in Kunar--across from Bajaur (Pakistan's Tribal Area where Pakistan Army had to carry out a major operation to eliminate TTP militants).
- The continual barking by American officials for Pakistan to "DO MORE!" in spite of the fact that no nation has done or sacrificed more to combat terrorism in its own self-interest. The number of soldiers martyred, treasure spent and tears of widows and orphans shed is testimony to the truth that those who claim that Pakistan is half-hearted in this effort are liars.
- The CIA-sponsored democratic farce whereby American engineered its puppets to sieze the reigns in Pakistan's recent elections. For those who still deny that the Pakistani elections were engineered, think for a moment how is it possible that the most corrupt and despised man in Pakistan's entire history, Asif Zardari would become the president of Pakistan if the elections were truly and fairly democratic?
- Even though our 'popularly elected' politicians are in the pocket of the Americans, they remain frustrated that certain institutions in Pakistan remain out of their reach. The black propaganda targeting Pakistan's patriotic armed forces, intelligence services and nuclear weapons arsenal reveals their obvious intent. Well-aware that these are the only institutions that truly have Pakistan's interests to heart, the public do not appreciate the Am-Brit campaign to malign them.
- The so-called Indo-US civilian nuclear deal that makes a blatant mockery of the non-proliferation accords, rewarding Indian intransigence and arrogance at the expense of Pakistan's national security.
- The exposure of blatant double-standards is evident as America turns on the weapons tap for India, whom it wishes to turn into its 21st century 'slave soldier' in order to counter China, while Pakistani officials are left dangling and must debase and humiliate themselves in order to ensure the delivery of a trifling number of F-16's and helicopters to fight the same enemies that America is sponsoring.
- The shielding, protection and nurturing of anti-Pakistan insurgent groups on Pakistani soil by the CIA. The so-called 'Baluchistan Liberation Army' (Read: Finding Clarity in the Baluchistan Conundrum, by Talha Mujaddidi ) and 'Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan' are only a few of many. All these groups base their insidious operations from inside Afghanistan -- which is occupied by the US.
In spite of their indirect control over our media, America will never win the 'battle of hearts and minds' in Pakistan. Even though the rise of the so-called 'free media' in Pakistan has brought to the fore a variety rentashills and rentagobs, self proclaimed pseudo-intellectuals who solemnly insist that Pakistan cannot resist Pax Americana (Pox Americana would be more appropriate), the people are not so gullible as to believe it. They see the example of Iran and Venezuela, which although not ideal states by any means, at least demonstrate that those who resist American hegemony can still survive and even prosper.
Where there are pockets of resistance, this only demonstrates the existence of an honorable people who are not prepared to compromise on their dignity. The recent polling is cause for great hope. It proves what was never in doubt -- the Pakistani population will not stand for these US violations of Pakistan's sovereignty and national interest for much longer.
We know that we fear Allah more than we fear America, but the nation must now realise another profound truth -- salvation does not lie in continued cooperation and debasement in front of America, but only in faith in Allah and is His Messenger (SAW). It is time for this nation to throw off its shackles and re-declare its independence.
Atif F Qureshi is part of the PKKH Editorial Team and also writes for PakDestiny.net